The delicate process of wine-making requires attention to every detail. Everything matters, even the weather.
Sparkling wine by Artwinery is produced in the same climatic zone as the famous champagne wines.
It has been proven for centuries: the best sparkling wines in the world are created under such conditions!
Selected grapes are the basis of the unique taste of our sparkling wines. Grown on fertile soils of southern Ukraine, in the sunny climate of Odesa, Kherson and Mykolaiv regions, it gets a rich taste and multifaceted bouquet.
The uniqueness of each wine from the Artwinery collection depends on the coupage – a combination of different varieties of grapes in special proportions. We use traditional European varieties: for sparkling white wine – light and sunny Pinot and Chardonnay, spicy-bitter Aligoté, enveloping honey Riesling, and for red sparkling wines, the coupage is based on silky tones of the Cabernet group, tart berry notes of Merlot and velvety shades of Saperavi.
In fact, the creation of sparkling wine begins here – in the blending shop. Here, the raw material from different varieties of grapes, collected on different years in different vineyards, is combined according to unique formulas known only to our winemakers-technologists. This achieves a special taste of sparkling wine by Artwinery – perfectly balanced, moderately sweet and moderately strong, with bright nuances, long-lasting after-taste and unique bouquet.
Here, the light floral tones of white sparkling wines are born, and rich, spicy shades of red sparkling wines are created. But before creating a blend, there is another important process – assembly: wine materials are combined by varieties and places of growth.
Tiraging is the next step in creation of sparkling wine – at this stage, the wine is bottled to be saturated with carbon dioxide and show some spirit.
But first the blend is distilled; tirage liqueur and yeast starter are added to it. Yeast plays a crucial role in the process – that is why we have developed our in-house special ‘yeast race’, the recipe of which is another secret know-how of the company.
The Artwinery tiraging shop is one of the most modern and powerful in Ukraine. Its automated bottling lines fill up to 12,000 bottles per hour! Wine bottles are sealed with a temporary crown cork and taken to ageing. From now on, they will be stored in special containers for many months, and the process of champagnisation will be ongoing inside each bottle.
Ageing is the stage which creates a bouquet and a taste of wine. The longer the bottles of wine stay in our underground storage facilities, the more expressive and richer the taste becomes. The ageing of sparkling wines by Artwinery takes at least 9 months, and for some wines it can last more than 36 months and even longer. Magic, or, as winemakers call it, ‘secondary fermentation’, happens during the first month. Over this time, bubbles are created in the bottle.
This process is very lively. Sometimes bottles cannot even withstand it, but eventually the activity of yeast is gradually subsiding. But you should not think that during all this period of time the wine is left without our attention. On the contrary – this is where the stage of delicate handwork begins: during the months of ageing, each bottle is repeatedly moved and shaken by hand. Why? That is how the special bubbles are born, for which we love sparkling wines so much!
While the wine is ageing, a natural deposit is created in each bottle – this is the yeast itself, which started the process of secondary fermentation and helped the wine to become sparkling. To get rid of it, we need the next process – remuage (riddling). Remuage (riddling) is a very important process in the production of natural sparkling wines, which is carried out by special master riddlers. Such professionals turn the bottles of aged wine over at an angle of 45° manually.
And then, for several months, they rotate each bottle by hand every day, lightly tapping them on the edges of the holding stands and tilting them into vertical position. The purpose of such actions is to reduce the sediment to a temporary cork gradually and very carefully. There is no need to hurry in this process. It is important to make sure that the sediment collects itself on the cork, and none is left on the walls of the bottle.
Degorgage is a process of releasing sparkling wine from deposits, which is collected on the cork thanks to the careful actions of the riddlers. All we have to do is remove the cork! To do this, we place the neck of the bottle in a special solution which freezes the sediment. And as soon as the bottle opens, a piece of ice literally flies out under the pressure of carbon dioxide.
All these procedures require high accuracy and speed, so they are performed automatically. And we are proud that Artwinery has one of the most modern degorgage lines used only by a few manufacturers in the world.
The already opened bottles are delivered to the liquor dispenser, where expedition liqueur is added to the wine. The brand of sparkling wine depends on its volume: whether it will it be extra brut, brut, dry, demi-sec or semi-sweet. Then, the bottles are corked, the cork is fixed with a wire cage – muselet – and transferred for control ageing.
Take the unique opportunity to see the entire cycle of sparkling wine production with your own eyes. Visit the underground art galleries, located at a depth of 72 meters. Experience the atmosphere in which world-renowned premium products are born!